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What do you put in your email signature?


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17 replies to this topic

#1 comp12

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 07:44 PM

Just for fun - what do you guys put in your email signature? Name, email, degree/current program?, office location, office hours, name of current course that you are TAing?, previous degrees that you hold?

Edited by comp12, 15 June 2012 - 07:45 PM.

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#2 Eigen

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 07:55 PM

I don't have a common signature... I type one for each e-mail I send out, if I think it necessary.

I have several different categories of e-mail "types" I send out- one is in reference to our student organization, so e-mails to administrators, staff, other graduate students, etc. Those are usually signed with name/department/organizational position.

E-mails for research purposes, usually go out with name/research group/degree/department.

And to students for things I'm teaching, usually go out signed with just my first name.
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#3 OregonGal

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 08:12 PM

On my personal e-mail, I don't keep a signature--I find it annoying when people have large-font inspirational quotes under their name. On my professional e-mail (work e-mail) I list my title, mailing address, e-mail and phone number. If I TA'd a course I'd add in any official office hours but I probably wouldn't bother listing my courses or my undergraduate degree. One of the most useful things about e-mail services like Outlook is the ability to set a signature template so you don't have to re-type it every time. You can even set multiple templates like one with all your contact/hours info for students, one for your classmates/professors etc.
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#4 go3187

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 08:24 PM

99.9% of the emails I send from my university email are signed just with my first name. My full name can be read in my email address.

Of the remaining 0.1%, 99.9% are signed with my first name initial.

If my department or position matter in what I have to say in the email, I usually just include them in the text of the email.

G :P
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#5 AbaNader

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 09:43 PM

Just my name (first, last) in my personal email. My name, title, work address, website, phone number on my professional emails. It makes it easier for people to identify you and contact you in other ways if they need to (has happened before). I don't put in any personal details/emails, etc.
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#6 TakeruK

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Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:50 AM

I do what Eigen does (see above). I don't use templates because my philosophy is that I would only include the relevant information in each email signature -- if I was writing an email as a member of Student Organization to other students, I don't need to include things like my past degrees, "MSc Student", my position in Volunteer Organization, etc. Also, for all "internal" emails, e.g. to anyone in the department, I would just sign my first name, even for official Student Organization business, unless it was really really official (e.g. the actual message comes as an attached PDF with letterhead!) and/or involved people from outside of the department. Even for collaborators, I just sign my name, since (a) they probably know me and (B) we send enough emails to each other that it would be really annoying for them to see it everytime. If they forgot what school I was at, and wanted to know for some reason, they only need to look at the domain of my email address!

When there is a good reason to include alternate forms of contact, then I add it in manually but these circumstances are rare. Generally, if the only people I'd want to contact me outside of email (e.g. come to my office, call my phone, skype, use my personal email address) are people that would know this information already!
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#7 wine in coffee cups

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Posted 16 June 2012 - 04:56 AM

My current work signature follows the company template: name, position, company, firm description, mailing address, landline, fax number (lol), mobile phone, email, firm website, and a 79 word legal disclaimer.

Looking forward to not using a signature anymore!
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#8 Hank Scorpio

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 01:31 AM

I find it annoying when people have large-font inspirational quotes under their name.

Bwahaha. That is so true. I mean, I agree completely.
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#9 jeffster

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 08:11 AM

I've been working in business for a while now, so maybe it's different from academia, but I actually find it immensely helpful when people at least list their job title in their email signature. "Who the hell is this person that just emailed me? Oh, there in their email signature it says Vice President of Cookie Baking. Okay, I didn't know that was a position, but I better be nice to them." You know, that sort of thing.

I would think even in academia, however, it would be frequently very beneficial to at least list phone, office location and title for your official school email.

One thing I can't stand though is the use of jpegs in an email signature. :( Oh, and I should add that you definitely want to avoid parroting a mini version of your CV in your email signature. Just keep it functional.

Edited by jeffster, 19 June 2012 - 08:21 AM.

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#10 go3187

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 09:55 AM

One thing I can't stand though is the use of jpegs in an email signature. :(


Yep! And the emails with a background image annoy me even more. Got a couple of those...
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#11 Eigen

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 03:52 PM

I've been working in business for a while now, so maybe it's different from academia, but I actually find it immensely helpful when people at least list their job title in their email signature. "Who the hell is this person that just emailed me? Oh, there in their email signature it says Vice President of Cookie Baking. Okay, I didn't know that was a position, but I better be nice to them." You know, that sort of thing.

I would think even in academia, however, it would be frequently very beneficial to at least list phone, office location and title for your official school email.

One thing I can't stand though is the use of jpegs in an email signature. :( Oh, and I should add that you definitely want to avoid parroting a mini version of your CV in your email signature. Just keep it functional.


It all just depends what proportion of e-mails are going out to people who know you, vs those who are going out to people who don't.
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#12 DBP

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 12:49 AM

Throughout undergrad, I got annoyed at people boosting a bunch of different titles in their signatures like:

"president of club x,
vice-president of club y,
founder of z,
student of school ABC"

So I did my own version:

Name
placeholder title,
some organization at a hierarchical institution


I only used it when emailing friends or other undergrads :P
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#13 Medievalmaniac

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 08:45 AM

My current work email includes my name, most recent degree, position and school, which provides credential snapshots - I use it for conference activity, abstract submission, and other scholarly activity, and also college admissions stuff (I teach at a high school) along with the requisite 79-word disclaimer message. My personal email includes my favorite quote du jour and a link to my blog, since I'm also a writer. I love quotes, unlike the folks above me. :P My university email will include my immediate contact information, modeled on the signatures of the professors on all the listservs I belong to - name, position, office, office hours, phone.
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#14 msafiri

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 04:41 PM

When emailing students I use the following format for the signature, though I usually sign the email with just my first name.


FirstName LastName
Instructor XXX
Office Location
Office Hours
Email address

You'd be amazed at how often students can forget which course they're writing you about...
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From lurker to active poster to... Where does this story lead?


#15 far_to_go

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Posted 01 July 2012 - 06:14 PM

I don't have an e-mail signature for writing to students (or anyone else). However, when I look up my students' e-mail addresses and contact them through our university's online student info system, it automatically includes the course discipline/number in the subject line, like this: "[ANTH 101] Readings for next Tuesday". It's pretty nice, actually; it reminds students of who I am and why I'm writing to them, without me having to worry about managing a signature.
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#16 Sigaba

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Posted 01 July 2012 - 09:08 PM

If the communication is work related, my first email in the string will have my job title and full contact information. My subsequent messages will just end with "Best regards, [Sigaba]." This practice come from having to scroll through some very long email strings and noticing that a lot of that length is filled with others' contact information that I already have.

If the communication is school related, I generally go with "Yours in History, [my initials]."

A point to keep in mind is that email signatures work better when the driving factor is the context. For example, in some situations, putting one's degrees and certifications in the signature is the norm. In others, it would draw frowns. If you want to buck the system, match your desire to do so with the question "Will this new wrinkle improve the reception of my note, or will it distract attention?"

Also, be careful putting your office hours in a signature. If someone--especially an undergraduate--shows up based upon that information and you're not there, you could have a situation that is entirely avoidable.

My $0.02.

Edited by Sigaba, 01 July 2012 - 09:08 PM.

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#17 honkycat1

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 12:50 AM

I will only have a full signature when I feel the information in that signature (title, school, etc) is relevant to the email and I feel the recipient needs to know it. I.e. If I think writing out my title and qualifications in the body of the text is not necessary, I usually don't include it in the signature either.

my default email don't have default signatures. I don't even sign most of my emails, I'm pretty informal with my emails especially when sending to my peers and advisor who I see often.
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#18 romnickhudges

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 06:37 AM

It can be your name or some contact information as well. On the other hand, if you want the people to know your products or services you can include in there to or can be a website also.
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